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Other Hardware and Peripherals Other Apple systems and peripherals discussion.

Backing up with Time Machine via USB


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mirthmaker

 
Member Since: Jul 01, 2011
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Hi,

I just have a pretty basic question that I should know the answer to. I'm needing to back up my Macbook Pro to a Time Machine. I'd like not to use a cat-5 because it takes a while, and instead I'd like to do it with USB since there's a USB port on the Time Machine. Problem is I don't know what kind of cable I need. I've been looking online and so far I've seen "data transfer" cables and "usb male to male" cables, but are these not the same thing? Or am I missing something? If not, what is the difference?

Thanks,

-E
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Slydude

 
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i assume that you are referring to wanting to back up to the Time Capsule which is a combination router and hard drive. Time Machine is the program used to complete the backup. If that assumption is wrong disregard the rest of this post.

The USB port on the back of a Time Capsule is designed for attaching usb hard drives/printers to it so they can be shared over the network. AFAIK you can't use that port to attach a Mac to it using a male to male cable. Besides, unless I did a bad job converting the numbers an ethernet connection between the Mac and Time Capsule should be faster if you are using a gigabit ethernet connection.

Assuming such a connection would work over USB there is an additional problem. would arise if you made subsequent backups via ethernet or wirelessly. Time Machine uses a sparse bundle file to store a backup when it's performed over a network. That is not used when a drive is directly connected to the Mac so it would likely start over if you shifted from one type of backup to the other.

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mirthmaker

 
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Yes. Time Capsule, not Time Machine! Sorry, I seem to confuse those often. Thanks for the reply. I was hoping there would be a faster way of backing up my stuff other than ethernet. Oh well.
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Slydude

 
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Don't feel bad I transpose those two names pretty often myself. I could be wrong about the connection between the Time Capsule and Mac. An Ethernet connection is not too bad. You should avoid doing the first backup wirelessly if possible though. That can be quite slow.

I'm currently backing up my MB Pro in a way that is similar to what you want to do. I am using an external hard drive attached to the Time Capsule though. I think it slows me down to USB speed but the up side is that if there are any possible disk related errors I can disconnect the drive, plug it directly into the Mac, and attempt repairs. Those utilities don't usually see the Time Capsule.

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